Savannah cats are a relatively new breed created toward the end of the 1990s.
They come from a hybrid of a male African serval and a female domestic cat. They were recognized as a new breed by TICA in 2002 and accepted for Championship status in 2012.
They are tall, lean, graceful and wild-looking cats. Their hair is short and requires very little care. Since this is a new breed, there is no genetic disease associated with them and they are generally in very good health.
Savannahs have a long body and long slender legs, giving them a very graceful and elegant look. The back legs are longer, making them excellent jumpers. The head should be small and triangular with a very long muscular neck. The ears should be large and placed high on top of the head. The tail is generally short and thick. The coat of the cat is spotted tabby and many colours are accepted.
TICA standards for the race:
Savannah cats are well known for their remarkable personality. They are very curious and assertive. They need a great deal of interaction on a daily basis. They are not a lap cat. They will bond strongly with their family by following you around like a dog. They can be trained to walk on a leash and go fetch. They are very intelligent. You can watch a video of our Storm on Facebook opening a door. Some Savannah cats have even learned to use the toilet.
Things you should know if you intend on bringing your cat to a show. My family has always enjoyed going to cat shows. When I got my first Savannah, I thought naively that if she had TICA papers she would automatically be allowed to enter the competition. NOT SO!
A savannah cat comes from a cross between a domestic cat and a feline. Hybrids are not allowed to enter competitions, which are for domestic cats. F1, f2 and f3 Savannahs are considered hybrid cats. F4 is the first generation considered domestic and is most likely to have retained many of the serval characteristics. You then need a cat that has not been mixed with another breed for at least 4 generations. Which is what the A, B, C and sbt refers to. A Savannah mixed with a Bengal is still a Savannah cat with TICA papers but it is a Savanah A or foundation cat. If you breed this Savannah A with another Savannah, you get a B and so on. To make an sbt Savannah, four generations of breeding are needed without introducing non-Savannah cats.
For more details refer to the chart below: